This section is from the book "The Gardener's Monthly And Horticulturist V26", by Thomas Meehan. See also: Four-Season Harvest: Organic Vegetables from Your Home Garden All Year Long.
By the following remarks before the Massachusetts Horticultural Society by Mr. Wm. D. Philbriek, it appears that dandelion as a salad is growing in popularity in America:
"When the cultivation of the dandelion was first undertaken, the attempt created considerable merriment, but now they are grown in large quantities. Almost any garden soil is suited to their culture, but they are gross feeders, and will take a large quantity of manure. They are sometimes planted on a warm slope for an earlv crop, and on a cooler exposure for a later, and under the shade of apple trees for still later. It is very important to have fresh seed, as it loses its vitality in two or three years. Market gardeners generally raise their own seed. The ground must be made very fine, as the seed is very small and apt to dry up, especially if planted late, and it must not be sown too deep. It is found better to plant anew every year, as the crop the second year is not of as good quality as that of the first. In the field the cutting begins in April, before the plants are half-grown, as they bring a better price then; early in May they come in so freely as hardly to pay for marketing. The dandelion is easily forced; one way is to dig up selected plants in autumn and set in frames, but sometimes it is planted in houses, though the frame is most generally used.
When first cultivated, the seed was saved from the largest and finest native plants, but there are several French varieties which are superior to these, and these French kinds have been improved by careful selection".